The Australian men’s sepak takraw team headed over to the annual King’s Cup Sepak Takraw World Championships held in Bangkok, Thailand and this year came home with bronze medals in both the Division 2 men’s Team event and the Division 2 Doubles competitions.
It’s always hard work pulling a team together from around Australia given the distance between all our players and the 2019 team was one of our most diverse yet. Made up of six players from Cairns, two from Darwin, one from Bendigo, and one from Canberra. The boys from Cairns are all Australian-Hmong, and we had three new Australian-Karen players join the team this year which was great to see after our first Australian-Karen player joined last year.
Doubles saw us in a small group with only Bangladesh and Germany. Our boys had the first match of the tournament against Bangladesh, they were quick to settle their nerves and walked away with the win in straight sets. Against Germany it was a different story, we started strongly and claimed the first set with ease. But at the change of ends in the second, Germany controlled the match and maintained it through the third set – defeating Australia 2 sets to 1. Due to Germany losing against Bangladesh in straight sets – we actually topped the group by count back!
That saw us go through to play Singapore in the semis, we played some good points but Singapore proved to be too strong and took the win in straight sets.
We were elevated to Premier Division this year in Regu which saw us come up against Singapore(again!) and Thailand – some of the best in the sport. It was a great experience for our players to test themselves but we weren’t able to get a set off either team, meaning our regu campaign finished in the group stages.
In the group stage of Team event we had some close matches but ultimately triumphed against Iraq, Oman, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh setting up semi final with Cambodia. Unfortunately for us, Cambodia proved to be too strong and they claimed the position in the final, leaving us to settle for bronze.
A fairly successful 2019 King’s Cup campaign, and great to see all our international takraw family again.
Plenty of photos and further info on our facebook page